University of South Florida


Group photo at the Day at the Capitol event in Tallahassee

USF Day at the Capitol, January 2024

Final state budget includes funding to support key USF initiatives

By Adam Freeman, University Communications and Marketing

The University of South Florida will receive significant increased recurring operational funding and support for other important projects in the 2024-25 state budget that was signed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“The investments in USF are a recognition that we continue to provide great value to our state and we serve as an extremely valuable resource that impacts our communities in so many ways,” USF President Rhea Law said.  “The funding will help us pursue bold initiatives to further enhance our position in the Association of American Universities, progress toward our aspiration of becoming a top-25 public university and support the critical work of the dedicated members of the USF community to advance the goals outlined in our strategic plan.”

The budget includes: 

  • A $50 million recurring increase to USF’s operational budget to support the work of each of the university’s three campuses and USF Health, as well as to expand cybersecurity research and the cyber workforce.  A portion of this increase was funded through a new $100 million recurring investment in the state’s Preeminent State Research Universities Program, which will be split equally between the four institutions that are expected to meet the necessary preeminence benchmarks this year. 
  • A $35 million nonrecurring operational support increase to fund strategic projects for the institution, including completing the major clinical trial underway at USF Health to measure the effectiveness of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on alleviating the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries in military veterans.
  • $31 million for critical infrastructure and safety improvements to ensure appropriate capacity for the present and future growth of the USF Tampa campus.
  • $10 million to upgrade USF facilities for student veterans, military families and first responders on all three campuses.  More details on this initiative are available here.
  • $7.2 million to invest in campus life facility projects on all three campuses and USF Health funded through the state’s Capital Improvement Trust Fund.
  • $750,000 for the USF Trafficking in Persons Risk to Resilience Research Lab that will go toward the development and operation of a statewide human trafficking data repository. 
  • The legislature also agreed to invest $100 million nonrecurring funds for the State University System’s Performance-based Excellence Recognition Program, which was created to recruit and retain top faculty and research talent in the state. USF is estimated to receive $12.7 million nonrecurring from these funds. However, the exact amount of USF’s funding from this state investment will be determined by the Board of Governors later this month based on 2024 performance-based funding scores and the number of full-time faculty and researchers employed in programs of strategic emphasis.

In addition, DeSantis previously approved Senate Bill 330, which included a $5 million recurring appropriation for the USF College of Behavioral and Community Sciences to establish and operate the new Florida Center for Behavioral Health Workforce. The bill also designated Tampa General Hospital, in affiliation with USF, as one of the state’s first four behavioral health teaching hospitals. 

“We are incredibly grateful to the Florida Legislature for enacting, and to Gov. DeSantis for approving, such an impactful budget for USF.  I want to thank Senate President Kathleen Passidomo, House Speaker Paul Renner and the entire Tampa Bay Area Legislative Delegation for recognizing and rewarding USF’s trajectory. I appreciate the Board of Governors, including Chair Brian Lamb and Chancellor Ray Rodrigues, for their support of USF and advocacy for the State University System. I also wish to recognize our Board of Trustees, under the leadership of Chair Will Weatherford and Vice Chair Mike Griffin, for their tireless commitment to USF,” Law said.

The new state budget takes effect July 1. 

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